Since appearing on the scene in 2015, Finnish talent Yotto has been a production powerhouse. The Helsinki-based DJ/producer – aka Otto Yliperttula, 33 – hit the ground running that year with a pair of deeply groovy tracks (“Memento” and “Azzurro”) on Anjunadeep. He then continued to deliver several well-received EPs and, in 2018, he dropped a popular full-length, Hyperfall, which has generated 15 million streams so far.
This past year, he delivered three diverse singles on his new imprint, Odd One Out – the dark, techy “Nova,” the melodic, proggy “Is This Trance?” and the taut, housey “Shifter.” On the heels of a U.S. tour that includes late-year stops at EDC Orlando and Brooklyn’s Avant Gardner, Yotto talked studio tech with DJ Times.
DJ Times: What’s in your main studio set-up?
Yotto: Genelec and Eve Audio monitors, FL Studio and Ableton Live. Plug-ins are a huge mess, but I always go for classics: UAD, Waves and Native Instruments. Selected hardware would be Moog Subsequent 37 analog synth, DSI Prophet, Korg R3, and Korg Minilogue. A few of my favourite soft synths are [u-he] Zebra2, [u-he] Diva, the discontinued NI Pro-53 and a stack of multi-sampled instruments I’ve done myself. I’m redoing my studio at the moment and can’t wait to get a few new toys in there.
DJ Times: Your new imprint Odd One Out seeks to fresh music from new artists. What currently stands out to you?
Yotto: I get a lot of demos sent to me; the thing that always makes me notice a track is the core musical idea. Also, you can easily hear if people work on their own sounds or go with samples without much processing on them.
DJ Times: How has the deeper side of house evolved over the last few years?
Yotto: Dance music evolves, and at the same time, goes in circles. Right now, we are at a phase where there’s a lot of melodic house and techno. It’s clean and modern in production, but musically, it’s looking back at old trance and rave. I think Italo-disco influences are getting stronger every day, too.
DJ Times: As an artist, how do you infuse your music with emotion?
Yotto: Emotion in music is a tricky thing – with melodies there’s no absolute. Some people find certain sounds and chords sad; for others, the same chords evoke happy nostalgia. I try to always find a balance between those two worlds. Brighter, clearer sounds often evoke something that’s easier to call either happy or sad; but when the sounds get a little muffled and more de-tuned, I feel like the emotional content of the music becomes a bit richer, or at least harder to define.
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